Thursday, November 17, 2016

A New Season

As a nanny, I hang out with a 2 year old all day and I love it. He's a great kid, we have a ton of fun and being able to work one on one with kids is a huge passion of mine. There's just one catch. I don't have the community of peers around me when I go to work. 

Some of you go work in a restaurant, some may work in an office, some in a school, regardless of your job, most of you end up having peers around you. Adults to have conversation with, even if it's just about something as boring as the weather. I don't have that. I get to teach a child about his colors and have conversations about Paw Patrol. I love it. But I'm also lonely. 

I come home desperate to talk to my husband. I want to have conversations and talk. And then there are the nights he has to work. Then I'm all alone at home by myself, just like I was during my nanny kid's nap time earlier that afternoon. Currently I only have one close female friend that lives in the same town as me, and she's busy. We're all busy aren't we? But I have seriously desired lately to have more female friends. Female friends that are also married, and ones that aren't; I want to have conversations. I want to talk about our Lord and I want to make dinner together. I desperately want and need a woman or women in my life that I can relate to, yet learn from our differences. 

Yet I work in a field that doesn't foster new friendships with anybody over the age of 5. What do I do? Is this desire for a friend I can spend time with in person too much to ask for these days?  I feel like all the women in my life and in my town already have a lot of friends they choose to spend time with and asking for them to squeeze me in just makes me feel like a burden. Or that it may not be genuine. How do I navigate all of these transitions in my life? I'm newly married, I'm newly graduated and newly employed. And I would really love to have a new friend. 

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Hanging Rock, NC

Having lived in Greensboro for a year and a half before this year, I am so surprised I had never been to Hanging Rock State Park. In September 2014, soon after this past school year started my group of friends and I decided to drive out there and see what the hike was like. It is only about a 40 minute drive and the hike is great! The main trail is just over a mile and a half to the top and back, plus they have many other trails of different lengths and difficulties within the park.
The main trail is a relatively easy hike, there is a section with a lot of stairs which can be difficult on the legs, but all in all, very do-able for a beginner! Once you reach the top you are at the "hanging rock" and there is a great view of the foothills and in the distance you can see the beginning of the mountains. You can also see the city of Winston-Salem from the top which is pretty neat.
Growing up on the coast with flat land and water for as far as the eye can see, I never knew I enjoyed hiking until I hiked up Arthur's Seat in Edinburgh, Scotland. I love that we have an awesome area to adventure right down the road from Greensboro. I've been a few times since that first trip in September and I even took a friend from home who came to visit. If you are ever in the Piedmont Triad area and want to have an outdoors adventure, I would definitely recommend Hanging Rock State Park!

I like Georgia!

In April, my boyfriend and I drove down to Atlanta, Georgia to see the Atlanta Braves home opener baseball game and visit some of Kenny's family that recently moved to the area. I had not been to a major league baseball game since 2008, so I was really excited to head down there, but not as excited as Kenny was, he's been a Braves fan since before he could walk!
The drive from Greensboro to Atlanta is about five hours, but when you stop a million times to grab food and caffeine and use the restroom, then factor in 5:00 rush hour, it takes much more than five hours! Ha! We made it to Turner Field and it looked like it was going to pour down rain, and by the time we had parked and made it into the stadium, it did just that. There was quite a lengthy rain delay, but once the game started we forgot all about the fact that we were quite wet. The Braves won against the NY Mets, and it was a great way to start the season.
We left the stadium and continued south to Kenny's cousins and went right to bed when we arrived. It was late - about 1:00 in the morning!!
The next day we got up and enjoyed breakfast and caught up with Leanna and Gracie before heading back into the city to go to the Georgia Aquarium. We ate lunch in the CNN Center, and now Kenny and I cannot wait to head back to Atlanta to actually tour the center. I had been to the aquarium once a long while ago, so it was so nice to go back and see it all again. I love the beluga whales!
We had a nice evening of jumping on the trampoline with the girls and playing fetch with Pete the dog in the lake!
The next morning we went to church with them before heading back to North Carolina. I'm so glad we got to take a road trip together as well as visit with Kenny's cousins. Since leaving Europe I've been missing taking adventures and traveling, and this is just what I needed! I found that I really liked Georgia, and I would love to visit Savannah one day. Let me know what your favorite things about Georgia are.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Sometimes it Hurts...

It’s a weird feeling I have been having lately. This semester back at UNCG has been one of my best yet. Yet one of the most difficult as well. I really feel at home here in Greensboro and I not only do I serve an awesome God, have wonderful friends in my life, but I have also met a really awesome guy. I really like being in Greensboro. I want to spend the next year and a half I have here enjoying every moment. Having as much fun as possible. Reminding myself that school does not have to be number one or even number two in life. That passing is important but A+’s not so much.

I said at the beginning of this semester that I would focus on having fun. And have fun I have done. But I have also had a lot of schoolwork to get done. Two speaking intensives and a writing intensive is not joke. Oh yeah, and I’m learning Spanish (doing pretty well at it I must say), and I’m a Peer Leader and I’m a Think Tank participant. Now, with barely any time left in the semester, I do feel like I slightly over-committed myself on the school side of things, and I’m looking at how to go forward into next semester, but that is another conversation for another day.

But the main thing that has made this semester difficult is missing. Missing England. Missing Seattle. Missing friends. Missing family. Missing traveling. I want to do all of these things. But I want to be here. I want to be in Greensboro. How do I explain that to people? I do I even make sense of it on my own? Right now at this moment I miss England so terribly much. I miss Ella, Amy and Kayleigh, the wonderful girls I became friends with over there. But I also think about this afternoon when I got to spend time with Kenny. And this evening when I got to spend time with Amanda. Those times were awesome and I really enjoyed them and I know if I left, I’d miss these things just as much.

I guess life is all about finding a balance of all the things you enjoy and love. But why are all of the places, people and things I love so far away from each other?

Having said that it’s such a blessing that I have had all of these experiences to live in different time zones, and to see different things and I would not trade them for the world. Even if I miss them so much I hurt.

I just want to focus on living in today and having as much fun as possible.

Monday, September 22, 2014


Okay, so I fail. I really really fail. I have been back in America for 102 days and I finally finished putting my pictures up. Yep. I fail.

I think part of the reasons I have put it off so long is because I did not want to accept the fact that my trip is over. I try so hard not to forget it all. I want it to go on forever. This summer kinda sucked. I was so angry that I was no longer in England.

I'll try to post more about my thoughts and feelings about the end of my time their and my re-entry back into America.

I will say though, that now the semester is getting going, I've really gotten into the rhythm of things and I'm getting to spend so much time with friends. I'm incredibly happy and I cannot wait to see what this school year has in store for me.

Something super important to me is the fact that I will never stop going on adventures.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Paris Was...

...Not what I was expecting.
It certainly did not capture my heart like it has done for countless others. That being said, I still enjoyed my trip, but I'm glad I was only there for a short time and I have no huge urge to go back (Venice and Edinburgh however are both calling my name).

Saturday, May 17

The flight and customs went well, then I had to buy a bus ticket. I was under the impression that I could buy one from a machine with my credit card or cash, but the machine only took European credit cards. After a brief search, I found a desk to buy a ticket at and made my way to the bus stop. Paris was hot. Really, really hot. I was very glad that the bus was air conditioned. I found my hostel easily, even though it was out of the way. It was a nice hostel for the price. I found a place around the corner to eat dinner, I  got a Caesar salad- it was too hot for anything else. Across the street was a bakery and I got the yummiest dessert. It was really light and fluffy with strawberries but it wasn't cake. Who knows what it was, I don't read French. haha. My room was on the 5th (6th if you are American) floor and I had to climb A TON of stairs, so I avoided that as much as I could. I went to bed pretty early, because I had plans to get up early to make the most of my only full day in Paris.

Sunday, May 18

I took the bus to the Louvre nice and early. I wasn't sure how busy it was going to be so I arrived an hour before they opened. The courtyard out front was so empty, it was beautiful and actually quite peaceful. I was second in line, but by the time they opened the line behind me was very long. I went and got a audio guide, and I'm glad I did because the signs were all in French (in Italy, the museums had Italian and English). The main reason I decided to go to Paris at all was because I really wanted to see my favorite piece of art which is in the Louvre, The Nike of Samothrace. Well, I went off in search of that piece first and I find out it has been closed for the past few months and won't open until the end of summer for restoration and research. I was crushed. That was one of the main reasons I went and I didn't get to see it. You would think that when you visited that piece of art on their website an alert would come up, but nope... I had myself a little pity party in the bathroom, then I went on to try and enjoy the rest of my time in the Louvre. I stopped by the Mona Lisa to see what the hullabaloo is about. I still don't like it. The museum was so calm at first, but by the time I left at 11lish it was crazy and the tourists were started in get on my nerves. I walked to the Eiffel Tower and I realized I didn't need the directions I had printed out. You could see I most of the way along the river. When I first saw it I  started to laugh. I just couldn't believe I was in Paris. I found the line to climb the stairs and bought a ticket, then started the accent. The stairs weren't bad at all, but the heat did make me wish I had bought water before heading up. I ended up getting some at the 2nd "floor". The wait for the lift to the top (and back down) was ridiculous and they really could have organized it better. The view was amazing! You could see for ages. Once I made it down I got the cheesiest ham and cheese crepe (per Erin's request)and ate it on the lawns out in front of the tower. A man walked by while I was chowing down and said "bon apitet!" I thought that was pretty neat. I got an older couple to take my picture and I am so glad they did, they turned out really well. I started heading back towards my hostel and found a Starbucks to use the bathroom and then I decided to turn around and head towards a church I wanted to see called Sainte-Chapelle. It was a long walk, but wow, Sainte-Chapelle was amazing! So breathtaking. The whole church is made of stained glass. The lady at the ticket desk gave me the price for EU students, which was so nice. The Louvre didn't give me that! I got there just in time, by the time I left they had closed the gate! I started wandering towards Notre Dame which is just around the corner to take some pictures and I ended up finding a pet and flower market. I would have loved to have bought some plants there. Out front of Notre Dame a food festival type thing was wrapping up and I got a 2ft long baguette for 1 euro 50! The cheapest thing in all of Paris it seemed. I rode the Metro back to the hostel then grabbed some more water to go with my baguette dinner.

Monday, May 19

I got up and finished packing then grabbed breakfast downstairs before heading to the Jardin Luxmbourg (big gardens where the senate is housed) to see the Statue of Liberty. My feet hurt so bad and all I wanted to do was sit forever. The Statue of Liberty was small and I was really surprised! For some reason I thought it was the same size as the one in New York. I sat in the sun for a while and wandered around looking in shop windows nearby before deciding go ahead to the bus station that takes you to the airport even though it was a bit early. It ended up being a good thing because there was mall with free wi-fi across the street. It also had shops I enjoyed more so than the area I was at before. I slept most of the bus ride to the airport. Then the airport made me mad because it was really hot inside and the drinks were really expensive. The flight back plus the bus to Keele were really easy and uneventful.

Rend Collective Concert in Belfast

Thursday May 15th and Friday May 16th

On May 15th I left Keele at 10:30 pm to go to the bus station to take a bus to the Manchester Airport. I had a flight to Belfast early the next morning before the busses started running. I got to the airport around 1:30 after my National Express bus was 30 minutes late. I found a dark area with some benches to lie down on and I got some rest, but around 4am the airport got very loud! Who would have thought. I found a CafĂ© and got some tea and waited until my flight. The flight ended up being very quick, but the flight attendants were much to cheery for the hour. haha.
I took a bus from the airport to the Belfast city center and found my hostel easily, dropped off my bag and met up with Erin. We went by St. George's market, but since it was a weekday, the vendors had more food and veg than the arts and crafts we were looking for. Luckily a new market had just opened up for the summer season in front of the city hall. There was a lot of really neat food vendors there and we ended up getting some German Braughtworst. It was really good, but super filling. We ended up eating the braughtworst and feeding the buns to the pigeons. It felt really warm to Erin and I, but really it was only about 69 degrees. We wandered around the shops in the city center and I ended up leaving my phone in a bookstore (Eep!), but thankfully it was still there when we retraced our steps. We headed over to Queen's University (where the concert was being held) and hung out on their front lawn and used their Wi-Fi. Their grass was pretty much perfect. By the time the concert was supposed to start I was so exhausted and ready to crash, but once Tenth Avenue North came on, I forgot all about that. Both Tenth Avenue North and Rend Collective were so good. We were right up at the front and we got an amazing view of the whole performance. We certainly were so blessed to be able to worship our Lord in such a great setting with everybody else there. After the concert, I went back to my hostel and got a good sleep before heading to Paris the next day